07 May 2017

VILNA GAON: The 20th and the 42nd Days of the Omer and the Redemption

The Vilna Gaon said that the 20th and 42nd days of the Omer were special days, spiritual windows of opportunity with respect to the Redemption of the Jewish People.

As such, they are good days to pray extra hard for the arrival of Moshiach and the Final Redemption. These two days, more than the other 363 days of the year, are good opportunities to give thanks to God that we are still here as a people, and living on our land once again. Neither is a small miracle.

What redemption-yearning person would want to pass up such an opportunity? What Jew who prays for redemption at least three times everyday in his Shemonah Esrai would not want to take advantage of such a unique window to geulah shlaimah?

Yet each year, millions of religious Jews shut the window of spiritual opportunity on these two days of the Omer. For decades now, the 20th and 42nd day of the Omer have come and gone, and many redemption-oriented did little to use them to further the cause of redemption.

How can that be?

The answer is simple. The 20th day of the Omer happens to be Yom HaAtzmaut, Israel Independence Day, and the 42nd day is Yom Yerushalayim—Jerusalem Day.

[. . .]

The 20th day of the Omer has once again come and gone, and so many people who should have used the opportunity to push for the Final Redemption, did not. When the 42nd day rolls around in another two weeks, let’s not waste it. Let’s not be fooled, again, by the Sitra Achra. Let HIM be fooled by US when we push away distraction to get to the real spiritual opportunity of such a holy day.

Source: From “Fooled Again,” by Rabbi Pinchas Winston Shlit”a at ThirtySix.org


Reuven said...

Maybe what the Gaon of Vilna foresaw already happened: the creation of the state of Israel as well as the conquest of Jerusalem's old city could definitely be interpreted as steps of the Redemption process...

Anonymous said...

Wow Neshama!
Half of the opportunity is still open!
The 42 day is certainly very special.
On Yom Yerushalayim someone came to us and blowed the Shofar. My son asked him, if he could try it too!l. Wow how he did! First time in his life blowing the Shofar so loud, we where blown away! Then this Tzadik told him to ask Hashem something. He asked for something impossible!
A rabbi in another city started to have dreams about. In the week of Malchut he called us.The impossible task was accomplished when Yesod was in Malchut by a mysterious person with super long beard, couple of rabbis and without any sedatives, right there, in our house.
A prayer of a pure child seeking help on Yom Yerushalayim is enorm powerful!
Thank you Hashem.
Thank you Neshama, for reminding me!

Tziki kedera said...

With out a source this is fake news... please bring it or retract...

Neshama said...

Tziki kedera: The source is written at the bottom of the post. It came from well-respected Rabbi Pinchas Winston Shlit”a. Is your cognitive dissonance getting the best of you.

According to cognitive dissonance theory, there is a tendency for individuals to seek consistency among their cognitions (i.e., beliefs, opinions). When there is an inconsistency between attitudes or behaviors (dissonance), something must change to eliminate the dissonance. simplypsychology

In psychology, cognitive dissonance is the mental discomfort (psychological stress) experienced by a person who simultaneously holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values. The occurrence of cognitive dissonance is consequence of a person's performing an action that contradicts personal beliefs, ideals, and values; and also occurs when confronted with new information that contradicts said beliefs, ideals, and values. Wikipedia

Anonymous said...


" Several sources, written many years before the establishment of the State of Israel, reveal that the Vilna Gaon’s disciples were instructed by their rabbi to perform the actions that were

important in laying the corner-stone for Redemption precisely on the 20 th day of the omer, since on that day the “outer shells” have no dominion. [2] Therefore the Vilna Gaon’s disciples

established Beit Midrash Eliyahu, named after their rabbi, on the 20 th day of the omer, 1812. This was an act of supreme importance to them, in view of which we shall cite several primary sources.

Kol ha-Tor, a book attributed to the Vilna Gaon’s disciple, R. Hillel of Shklov, who graced Jerusalem for some thirty years, writes (chapter 5, p. 114):

When we established our residence in the holy city of Jerusalem in 1812, enlightenment came to us one day in the same year that the cornerstone was laid for Beit Midrash Eliyahu, named after our rabbi, the Vilna Gaon; for at that moment the first aperture opened in the iron partition, allowing access to the merit of our ancestors’ covenant (combining the sephirot of Foundation and Glory [Mercy] through Kingdom) which had

been blocked since the destruction of the Temple. That day was the 20 th of the omer, which as mystics know, is the day of Foundation in Glory [Mercy].

Midrash Shlomo (sermon 6, p. 53), an anthology of sermons by R. Solomon Zalman Rivlin,says:

Thus the days during which we count the omer are the best suited for rising to higher levels of sanctity, but on the other had they are more susceptible to infection by the “shells,” for it is a well-known principle that whatever is more sacred in time or place, in all manner of sanctity, is more likely to be harmed by the sitra ahra (the “other side,” forces of evil), which derives its vitality solely from holiness. For this reason one must take extra precaution during the omer not to come into contact with bad company and to avoid danger, save for two specific days during the omer on which the “shells” have no

dominion, and these days are the 20 th of the omer and the 42 nd day of the omer, as those

who are expert in mysticism know. (These two days lie along the line of Mercy – the 20 th

of the omer, being Beauty and Foundation, and the 42 nd of the omer, being Kingship and

Foundation; the 42 nd of the omer deserves greater attention, for this is Jerusalem Reunification Day and is remarkable in other ways, too, but this is not the place to go into further detail).

According to Mosad ha- Yesod (a book ascribed to the Rivlin family, Jerusalem 1999, p. 184), it turns out that the cornerstone of Nahalat Shiv`ah, the first neighborhood established in

Jerusalem beyond the walls of the Old City, was laid on the 20 th day of the omer, in the year 1869 (whose acronym means “the undertaking will succeed”).

Rabbi Samuel Rivlin, grandson of the author of Midrash Shlomo, elucidated the significance of

the 20 th day of the omer in the light of Kol ha-Tor, chapter 3. There the Vilna Gaon reveals 156

steps to Redemption, saying of the 17 th step: “The House of Jacob shall be fire and the House of Joseph flame” (Obad. 1:18). As we know, Jacob succeeded in overcoming Esau and his emissary only when Joseph was with him, protecting his mother. Jacob’s place is in the sephirah of Beauty, which includes Abraham’s Kindness and Isaac’s Severity; Joseph’s place is in the sephirah of Foundation, which includes Victory, Splendor and Kingship. It has the advantage of having no

light of its own and deriving its strength by drawing on all six. It turns out that on the 20 th day of the omer inclusiveness acts on all the sephirot, bringing them together to the highest level."


And if you ask about another little story between comments, its not new, but way of life of most of us, Jews! The power of speech, the power of prayer was given to us, Jews to survive and be a living proof that EIN OD MILVADO!

Shabbat shalom to Am Israel and all Hashems beautiful Creation.
אורנה ניצבת

Neshama said...

Orna, thank you very much. I am going to read (and enjoy) this on Shabbat.

Dov Bar-Leib said...

Just one small mistake though. The date of Ichud Yerushalayim was on the 3rd day of the 6th day War and is commemorated every year on the 43rd day of the Counting of the Omer, the 28th of Iyar, exactly 7 days prior to Shavuot. The 6 Day War began on the 26th day of the Counting of the Omer, the Sefirah of Yesod that is in Yesod. On the third day of that War at Chessed that is in Malkhut, the Old City was unified with the Western half of the City.

This has to do with the 42 camps in the Midbar including the Starting point at Ramses. The Ba'al Teshuvah movement really started in earnest with the miracles of the 6 Day War. There are 42 levels of purity that can be attained almost anywhere on earth where Torah Jewish communities exist, but to perfect oneself through the last 7 Sefirot of Malkhut, one must return to the Source of their Teshuvah, to Tzion, to complete the process of perfecting oneself through all 49 levels of purity. It is no accident that the 43rd campsite was not in the Midbar. It is in Eretz Yisrael, in the place called in Bereishit, Luz (whose gematriah is 43). Luz is now known as Beit El where Ya'akov dreamt of a ladder to Heaven BEFORE leaving Eretz Yisrael for Lavan's house in Charan. The earth folded up underneath him so that at the same time he was in Beit El, he was also in Yerushalayim, on the Temple Mount.

Dov Bar-Leib said...

On the issue of the 20th day of the Counting of the Omer, it is 100% true that Hey b'Iyar is that very day. The problem though is that in Eretz Yisrael, Hey B'Iyar can fall out on Shabbat, Sunday night, Tuesday night, and Thursday night. So in order to prevent Shabbat desecration, only when Hey b'Iyar falls out on Tuesday night is Yom HaAtzma'ut actually celebrated on Tuesday night/ Wednesday because Israelis love to BBQ on that day. So if it falls on Shabbat or Thursday night Friday, the celebration is on the preceding Wednesday night/ Thursday. If Hey b'Iyar falls out on Sunday night, there is a danger that the Yom Zikaron ceremony the previous evening which falls on Motzei Shabbat would lead to Shabbat desecration while setting up sound amplification equipment on Shabbat. So as it was this year, Yom HaZikaron was on Sunday night and Yom HaAtzma'ut fell on Monday night/ Tuesday, the 21st day of the Counting of the Omer.

Tziki kedera said...

Neshama... Dan la caf zechus...I couldn't open the sight on my old iphone... Meanwhile I'm impressed with ornas answer and hope to look at soon.5 iyar is talked about in breslov alot, as this was the day Rebbe nachman arrived in uman.
Kol hator is itself contriversal .The first printed copy we have was printed in 1968 by Rav m kasher.in that book there are 3-400 mistakes and misquotes which were printed as a book by itself.
האמת עד לעצמו...I have.. BN, more later

Neshama said...

Tziki – of course, no problem.

Reb Dov – Despite the coalescence (or lack thereof) of the dates, one can take advantage of the 20th and the 42nd days of the Omer for sincere bakashos to Hashem, as well as the 33rd!

www.thenutgarden.wordpress.com said...

“Each day has its own power” (Bahir §81).

“Come and see: There are times in the year when favor is found, and times in the year when Judgment looms. There are times in the month when favor is found, and times in the month when judgments loom over all. There are times in the week when favor is found, and times in the week when judgments appear in the world. There are times in the day when favor is found and the world is fragrant, and times in the day when judgments loom—and even in the hour. Thus it is written: [For everything there is a season,] and a time for every matter (Ecclesiastes 3:1), and similarly: [As for me, may my prayer to You, O YHWH, come] at a time of favor… (Psalms 69:14), and similarly: Why, YHWH, do You stand far off, and hide in times of trouble? (Psalms 10:1), and similarly: From afar, YHWH appeared to me (Jeremiah 31:3). And times when He is near, as is written: Seek YHWH when He may be found, call to Him when He is near (Isaiah 55:6); YHWH is near to all who call Him (Psalms 145:18). Therefore, that he not enter at all times into the sanctuary (Leviticus 16:2)” (Zohar 3:58a–b).

“In the ninth [month (Sivan)] Israel was answered by the Sea. And the ninth [seasonal] hour is the time of merriment, blessing, and joy [‘when He is feeding the whole world, from the horned ox to the brood of vermin’ (BT Avodah Zarah 3b)]. It is the hour of the [small] afternoon prayer in which Elijah was answered, as is written: And it happened at the hour of the afternoon offering that Elijah the prophet approached (1 Kings 18:36) [on the time of the small afternoon prayer, see BT Berakhot 26b]. It is received tradition for you that the ninth year of the jubilee is the most auspicious year [see Leviticus 25:20–22], the ninth month is a month of favor, and it is the most auspicious of months. The ninth day of the month is the most auspicious day of the month, and the ninth hour of the day is the most auspicious hour of hours. And the same occurs above, among the supernal ones—the ninth is most auspicious” (Berit Menuḥa: Second Way: The Way of Love, Ninth Vowel).

www.thenutgarden.wordpress.com said...

“When Solomon built the Temple and the lower world was in perfect accord with the upper world, Israel was entirely righteous, ascending numerous, lofty rungs. Then, Throne of Glory rose in rapture with abundant delight, with profuse exaltation. Then, Song of Songs of Solomon (Song of Songs 1:1), ascending in bliss, descending in bliss, joining in bliss—all worlds in bliss.

Song—for the blessed Holy One. Of Songs—for upper and lower realms. Which is Solomon’s—joining of all worlds in rapture, to the King who possesses peace completely.

Uttered by Elijah: ‘Song of Songs. It is written: YHWH will open for you His goodly treasure, the heavens (Deuteronomy 28:12). When the blessed Holy One created the world, He created sublime שִׁיתּין (shittin), channels—founts conducting rain of blessing and transcendent sanctifications from above. These drew first from the Fount of Life, from the supernal place from which they emerged [cf. BT Sukkah 49a].

In the beginning, before the world was created, a single desire called Hidden Thought arose and was revealed. Everything was set within that Hidden Thought, everything that existed, and that would come to exist. From that Thought arose the desire to create the world, and a subtle flow comprising hiddenness of Thought issued forth, inaudible, unrevealed. It can be perceived with wisdom that has been conferred—and not conferred—to the wise of heart, because it has not been revealed beyond.

From this flow five founts emerged, plus one that was sealed, and one absorbing all. These springs existed when the world was created, as is written: בְּרֵאשִׁית (Be-reshit), With beginning, ____ created אֱלֹהִים (Elohim), God (Genesis 1:1). בְּרֵאשִׁית (Be-reshit)—בָּרָא שִׁיתּ (bara shit), created a hollow. This hollow is a fount collecting all founts, nourishing worlds. The heavens (ibid.)—those six lofty springs, above all, conveying into this hollow.

From the day the world was created until the Temple was built, they were sealed, entirely closed. If you say, ‘But Abraham was in the world’—behold it is written: And there was famine in the land (ibid. 12:10). Of Isaac: And there was a famine in the land besides the former famine (ibid. 26:1). Similarly with Jacob, it is written: And there was famine in all the lands (ibid. 41:54). Of Moses, it is written in several places: Who will feed us? (Numbers 11:4, 18); the people thirsted for water there (Exodus 17:3); there was no water for the community (ibid. 20:2). Of Joshua, despite their having entered the land, it is written: the manna ceased…. and they ate of the produce of the land (Joshua 5:12). In the days of the Judges, it is written: In the days when the judges judged, there was a famine in the land (Ruth 1:1). Of David, it is written: There was a famine during the reign of David (2 Samuel 21:1).

How can this all be explained? The explanation is that those channels had not opened, and the world was nourished only from a squeezed-out ooze, with no opening at all—aside from the resin exuded from a tree, dripping below, or from a rock. When Solomon came and the Temple was built, all the worlds were in a single balance, above and below. Then the hollow that receives and gathers from all lofty channels opened up. When did it open up? When those lofty channels opened up. Once that hollow opened up, blessings flowed to the world.

When did it open? When a crooked one that sat at its feet was removed. When that one was banished, שִׁיתּ (shit), hollow, became שִׁיר (shir), Song, and goodly treasure (Deuteronomy 28:12) opened up" (Zohar Ḥadash, 62d–63a).